Metascore
88

Universal acclaim - based on 31 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 67 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 31
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 31
  3. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. Nobody Knows, by the often excellent Japanese filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda, is one of those special movies that can give us a new way of seeing.
  2. Yagira's performance is so extraordinary, it won him the best actor prize at the 2004 Cannes film festival.
  3. 91
    Moves at a stately pace; it's a long film, to boot. But there's real drama and pathos in the story, in the blend of matter-of-factness and potential catastrophe, in the depiction of innocence imperiled.
  4. 88
    Kore-eda expresses the terror of the kids' predicament with a touch that's equally tender and dispassionate.
  5. 88
    Kore-eda presents the deeply moving story in a documentary style that is both gentle and compelling.
  6. 80
    Kore-eda doesn't create the simultaneous sense of being destroyed and exalted that the greatest humanist movies do, but he's stayed true to his title.
  7. Beguiling but long-winded.

See all 31 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 39
  2. Negative: 2 out of 39
  1. WooChiaoT.
    Oct 16, 2005
    10
    There's a thin line between whether the movie is too long or not. Initially, I felt the same way too. But as I watched the second half, i realised what the seemingly nonsensical scenes are for - for the viewers to think and reflect. For those who lament that the show has no ending, think again. Remember why akira did not want to go to the public welfare? because he didn't want to be separated from his siblings. and the movie ended timely, and unfortunately, with the departure of yuki. If they hang on the way they are, they will be separated eventually as well, perhaps in a worse manner - death. towards the end of the show, arika approached saki whom he rejected earlier for help. he did not want saki's money initially because he believed it is against his principle. but he realises in the end that when faced with the harsh reality of face, we have to compromise our beliefs. akira has learnt a lesson - he will approach the welfare public authority. at the end of the show, shigeta (i can't remember the name of arika's brother) found a coin remember? it symbolises new hope for the children. Expand
  2. JakeB.
    Nov 7, 2008
    10
    Amazing film, I'm pressed for a better way to describe it, but I'm at a loss for words. Absolutely amazing.
  3. MarcK.
    Nov 26, 2005
    10
    An intense and sad film that left me emotionally drained at the end, and yes, in tears. Not only is this the best U.S. release of 2005 (I know it was released in Japan in 2004), this is one of the best films I've seen in the last 10 years. Expand
  4. BrentC.
    Jan 5, 2007
    10
    I just rented this movie. I was overwelmed with emotions. I couldnt stop crying at times. I felt like I was with them going thru the same pain. It is now one of the best films I have ever seen. Expand
  5. JackL.
    Jul 9, 2007
    10
    This movie is strangely mesmerizing and heartbreaking. There was no drama, no crying in the movie but I have endured one of the most intensely painful experience. Powerful movie!!! The movie is well acted and directed. There is no wasted moment in the whole 141 minutes. Every scene is well chosen and has its own effect to the audiences. There are some silent scenes in which the camera just stays still, capturing the very normal, unnoticed things of their life; and these scenes are precious. The ones who call this movie "boring" watch too many typical, bomb-blowing, gun-firing Hollywood drama. The repetition of the film IS THE POINT!!! That's how life is. Look at your life for a second. Is that what life is, a series of repetitive thing: we get up in the morning, we eat breakfast, we go to work/ school, and then we go home, we have dinner, we sleep and then we wake up again the next morning. These children and their life is portrayed beautifully real. It is NOT BORING!!! It is mesmerizing and heartbreaking. Those who say it boring, again, watch too much cheesy Hollywood film. What do they expect? A car accident? A gun-fire? A murder? The thieves get in to their apartment? Look at your life. These things don't come around as often as they do in Hollywood films. This movie is emotionally exhausted but it is never a waste to experience something like this. POWERFUL. Oh, and to Potechi who finds it is unbelievable to have a junior high/ high school outsider join the kids, I just want to say that for me, it is totally believable. You cannot use your cynical, protective, and doubtful sense of the adult to try to make sense the kid's world. Look at the details in the movie or the children who play at any park in real life. They play together. They laugh together. Only the adults are the one who are lonely, cynical, isolated and masked. The movie is utterly real and precious. A MUST SEE. What you experience in the movie maybe is what the four kids are experiencing themselves. The movie puts you in their life and make you experience it. So if you feel mind-numbing or bored or curious (about the mother) or heartbroken or emotionally drained or repressed, I think it would probably be what the children are enduring. Hope you will appreciate it. Expand
  6. Feb 20, 2013
    9
    Film Director, Hirokazu Kore-eda's take on a real life event of child abandonment in Japan. In Nobody Knows, Four children are left to fend for themselves when their mother takes off. The eldest son, Akira, is left in charge of his younger sisters and brother. He is forced to "grow up" and take charge but can only do so much. Hirokazu Kore-eda's cinematic progression and pacing is slow but riveting. It's a quiet film, yet spilling over with emotion. It's a comment on society and family. It reflects the status and shows us a cinematic situation of child abandonment it's not just a "pointless" and "boring" film. The kids act like kids. It's moving and eye-opening. As I say about all movies: Don't go in with expectations. Be surprised, entertained, and enlightened! Expand
  7. DonaldW.
    Jun 23, 2006
    2
    One word can describe this movie: boring. It could also apply to the other Koreeda movies I have seen. If another word is desired, try "pointless." If Koreeda is trying to tell us that young children should not be abandoned by their parents that isa point which certainly should not take two hours and twenty minutes to make as nothing could be more obvious. Expand

See all 39 User Reviews

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